The concept of travelling by train may be set to enter a new golden age, with an increasing number of travellers taking advantage of this wonderful mode of transport which allows them to visit numerous exotic destinations in comfort and style, reminiscent of the days of the ‘Grand Tour.’
One of the most visually beautiful train journeys in Europe is the route that takes you across the Swiss Alps. The wonderful thing about Switzerland is that it is eternally beautiful. From the glorious meadows on the high Alps in summer to the snow-covered glacial slopes in winter, the view from the train window will never be boring. The Bernese Oberland in the south of the country is particularly spectacular. From the summit of the Eiger to its beautiful lakes, you will be able to admire some of the best scenery in Europe, while the train climbs an ever-increasing gradient en route to the Italian border.
For some passengers, the principal thrill of travelling involves taking one of the many rail holidays on offer and crossing Italy with Venice as a final destination. This truly beautiful city, known locally as La Serenissima, is notably spectacular. Once in Venice, the water rules this city rather than the road, which means the gondola is a more appropriate method of transport than a car. Visit St Mark’s square, admire the majestic ancient skyline and enjoy the splendours of the ‘Museo del Settecento Veneziano’.
This ancient kingdom is usually covered in snow during the winter months, which makes it an ideal destination for a Highland tour. This remote area was impenetrable for centuries, but the increasing popularity of travelling by train now means that it is open to all. You will be able to marvel at the snowy peaks of the Western Highlands, stop off to share a ‘wee dram’ at the Oban Distillery and enjoy the serene beauty of this region’s many lakes. Dolphins and otters have made their homes along the coast and watch out for the odd stag from your train window as well.
One of the best ways to cross the daunting terrain of the United States is to take the train. The journey from New York to LA encompasses mountains, plains and a forest. You can follow in the footsteps of the early explorers in luxury and style. American trains are generally extremely comfortable and have a specially constructed viewing carriage with glass skylights so that none of the unique sights on this trip will be missed.
A train journey across Europe allows you to take in the cities and beautiful scenery, as well as marvel at the splendour of some of the continent’s most skilled architects. From the Baroque in Vienna and the medieval churches and town squares in Prague to the more modern architecture of some of the buildings in Barcelona, a tour through Europe resembles an adventure in history. Just take your seat and enjoy it all!